Prepper guide to fuel storage

Prepper's Guide on Fuel Storage
How to save money, store fuel, and use it wisely

It's all about avoiding the lines when a catastrophe is imminent!
Storing fuel is an essential prepper activity and yet storing fuel is
not without a heavy note of precaution, as you may well burn off
all your preps if you store fuel improperly! Handle fuel with care.
Learn how to store your fuel reserves properly and extend the life
of the fuel you store.

Did you know...
  • gasoline containers are red
  • kerosene containers are blue
  • diesel containers are yellow
  • propane containers are neutral white
  • green for portable camping stoves.

Below are some fuel storage tips...

How to Save Money on Gasoline for Driving
Gas is expensive today and it may be limited or wholly
unavailable tomorrow, so a prepper best pay attention on ways to
save money in refueling and caring for a vehicle:

#1. Never leave your vehicle's gas tank half empty.
"Topping up" forces fuel evaporation. Don't confuse this concept
with "topping off" which is overfilling the gas tank. Preppers live
with this life-saving rule in preparation for the day when gas is
unavailable, in short supply, or in high demand and just too
costly to afford. It's a cogent idea in preparedness, but you'll find
more financial incentive never to leave your gas tank half empty!
The more gas inside your tank , the less air inside. Air provides
evaporation opportunities.

  • Fill the tank full. Just driving back and forth to find the
    cheapest gas is wasting your fuel and money.

  • Don't go below a half a tank. In extreme cold conditions,
    your car might not start. Running with less than a quarter
    tank could destroy the electric fuel pump as it increases the
    condensation in the tank.

  • Want to save money at your local pump? Then visit before you head out to your next fill up. Type
    in your ZIP code and this amazing site will provide a list of
    gas stations and their prices (includes local prices on regular
    gas, midgrade, premium and Diesel prices) and provides the
    prices for paying in cash!

#2. Fill your tank in the mornings or the coolest time of day.
When the ground is cold, the gasoline is more dense and you'll
get more gasoline for your money. Gasoline evaporates in air, but
most rapidly when it's hot outside. Storage tanks have a barrier
to help minimize the evaporation; however, this one trick alone
could save you thousands of dollars in your lifetime.  You see,
gasoline expands in the warmth. The heat of the day will suck
your gas into vapors and you'll be paying for fumes. Gas stations
don't have temperature compensation. Save yourself some money
and fill up only when the ground temperature is cool.

#3. Slow the fuel nozzle.
You may not realize it, but gas has three settings for dispensing
fuel. Don't get trigger happy with the fuel nozzle on the fast
setting! Easy does it to let gas drip slowly into your tank. Pump
gas at the slowest setting possible to minimize vapors the gas
station keeps. If you're in a hurry to fuel up, you'll only agitate
gas and create more vapors at the high setting.

    4. Sealing your tank quickly after refueling.
Anyone who's ever left the gas seal opened knows this reality:
the air siphons your gas into vapors. It's good reason to seal the
fuel in your tank as quickly as possible.

#5. Avoiding fueling up when a fuel tanker truck is refilling the
This process brings the dregs of the gasoline (impurities of dirt,
sludge and the like) to the top and into your fuel source slowing
down the efficiency of your car.

#6. Changing your spark plugs.
Essentially, spark plugs are a pair of electrodes that produce a
high voltage spark to ignite the engine with a mix of air and fuel.
It's the explosion which drives the cylinder down and causes the
wheels of your car to move. Spark plugs, when running efficiently,
help your car run smoother, which keeps gas consumption more
even. Here's
how to change a spark plugs.

#7. Keeping air pressure full in the tires.
A properly pressured tire keeps the car in smooth and efficient
motion, whereas an uneven pressure tire wears on the car and
increases gas consumption with mileage. Check tire pressure
every two weeks, and do this in the morning, when it's colder and
before you've done too much driving in the day. Check your
manual for the proper tire pressure.

#8. Taking off slowly.
Save money on gas by taking it easy. Ease the amount of
gasoline you use by accelerating slowly. Quick acceleration
wastes gas.

#9. Avoiding idling!
When the car isn't in motion, you're getting 0 miles per gallon.
The only exception is when it's very cold where you need to warm
up your car to avoid an overhaul

    10. Limiting air conditioning.
Air conditioning sucks the fuel from your tank. Open the windows
while you're in a 25-mile an hour zone.

#11. Trusting your GPS (if you have it).
Trust your GPS even if things seem wrong while you're driving.
You can avoid unnecessary hills and stops with help from your
Global Positioning System (GPS). Best of all, with your GPS, you
can calculate the shortest distance for your route.

#12. Driving at a constant speed, not necessarily with cruise
A smooth, constant ride will help you avoid braking too much, so
be sure to anticipate stops and lights. Quick acceleration may
cause excessive braking and waste gas.  You may be thinking to
use your cruise control to keep at a constant speed, but not on
hills! Cruise control on hills may cause the car to idle or push too
much gas from your tank!

#13. Parking quickly.
Take the first parking spot you find, instead of circling in the lot
and wasting gas. Taking a tour of the parking lot only costs you
more money.

#14. Parking in the shade.
Parking in the shade will shield your tank as best as possible
from evaporation. At minimum, park so the sun's beams are not
on the side of the fuel pump.

#15. Using a fuel stabilizer for stored vehicles.
A fuel stabilizer keeps fuel fresh for quick, easy starts after
storage, while prolonging engine life. Sta-bil brand of fuel
stabilizer, pictured immediate right, removes water to prevent
corrosion and cleans carburetors and fuel injectors, and protects
engine from gum, varnish rust, and corrosion. What's more, you
won't need to drain your fuel before storing.

How to Store Fuel for the Long Term
The following will guide you to storing your fuel:

Step one: Store your fuel correctly in the proper container
(and never mix fuels).

  • Choose the proper color: Did you know gasoline containers
    are red, kerosene containers are blue, diesel containers are
    yellow, and generally propane containers are neutral white
    for barbecues, and green for portable Coleman type stoves?
    Keeping your fuel in different containers is important as
    mixing fuels could be lethal!

  • Keep valves and lids sealed properly.

Step two: Use fuel additives and stabilizers:

  • STA*BIL. Fuel stabilizers keep fuel fresh for quick, easy
    starts after storage, and they also prolong engine life. A
    trusted brand is STA*BIL on Amazon. It removes water to
    prevent corrosion and cleans carburetors and fuel injectors,
    and also protects your engine from gum, varnish rust, and

  • Fuel storage tip: Use a fuel funnel to help. The helpful
    extended filler neck opens gas tank trap door.

Step three: Check the storage conditions that apply to your
selected fuel type.
    Propane is odorless in it's natural state; however,
    manufacturers add an odor to help make this fuel more safe
    for consumers to handle: if it leaks, consumers will notice
    the odor! Always store propane outside. Read more below on
    the safe handling of propane.

Here are fifteen options for fuel around the homestead and

1. Firewood.
Firewood must be seasoned six months and kept dry. The harder
the wood, the longer it will burn.

2. Propane*.
Propane is on the more expensive side of fuels, yet  a convenient
fuel for preppers for cooking off the grid. Store propane in a well
ventilated area free from moisture in a flat and non-flammable
area, such as outside under an overhand and on concrete. Here's
more information on how to store propane properly.

3. Butane.
Ideal for camping stoves, Gasone butane fuel canisters are
relatively light in comparison to another popular fuel for cooking
stoves, propane.

  • Butane/Propane Mix Canister. Coleman makes a
    Butane/Propane mix canister, which are lightweight,
    resealable, and easily connect to stoves and lanterns.
    Backpackers who count ounces will appreciate this
    convenience. The downside: you can't recycle them, and in
    subfreezing temperatures, the fuel won't perform well.
  • WARNING: Don't mix fuel yourself!

4. Kerosene.
Kerosene lamps provide a classic prepper light source. A heater
fuel alternative, Kerosene is odorless when burning and has an
excellent heat output. It's extremely easy to store, but in an
ordinary plastic container lasts only a couple of months.

5. White gas*.
Extremely flammable, white gas is for outdoor use only! Ideal for
backpacking, it requires less fuel and burns better in higher
elevations. Coleman Fuel (white gas) is for lanterns, stoves and

6. Alcohol or Alcohol Stove Fuel.
Clean-burning, alcohol stove fuel for marine and lightweight
alcohol stoves.

7. Paraffin Lamp Oil and paraffin wax.
Clear smokeless and odorless, paraffin lamp oil is a general-
purpose lamp oil for traditional

8. Zippo or lighter fuel.
Distilled from cosmetic-grade petroleum, Zippo is the top choice
to refuel BIC-style lighters. Zippo's cool fuel burns cleaner and
lights faster than other fuels. More noticeably, it produces less
odor, making it a
great choice for hunters who want to keep man
made scents to a minimum.

9. Turpentine.
Klean Strip Turpentine is made from 100% renewable resources-
derived from tree resin. Because it's all natural you'll find no
hazardous air pollutants and no ozone depleting chemicals. It's
clean burning fuel.

  • Turpentine will transform ordinary matches into waterproof

10. Charcoal*.
Essentially burned wood, every prepper should learn to make
charcoal! You'll need a cookie tin. Here's how to make charcoal.

11. Rock Coal.
Coal is a mineral fossil fuel and not so easy to find. There are
two different kinds of rock coal: Anthracite Coal (best for home
use) or Bituminous Coal (easiest to light). For blacksmithing, coal
is essential and either kind of rock coal will work. Buying coal
nowadays is more of a novelty than a fuel source for your wood
burning stove as they are very pretty.

12. Cooking oils.
Fuel can be cooking oil, shortening, or any kind of fat or grease to
start your fire (campfire or candle light)!

13. Cosmetic and skin care oils.
Suntan oils and Petroleum Jelly. Suntan oil, lip balm, Vaseline all
will burn, which is good to remember when fuels are in short
supply. Preppers often combine Vaseline with dry lint or cotton
balls to make a tinder. Remember lip balm contains petroleum

14. Solar Power.
Preppers today have the luxury of so many solar powered options.
You can start your solar project small by simply stocking solar
rechargeable batteries.

15. Car fuel. Gas and Diesel.
Fuel evaporates easily, but you can store gas in a gas tank
storage container for up to two years and with stabilizers, such as
Sta-Bil, you can go a few years longer. Diesel on the other hand,
only six months.

Trucking Industry and Gas
Here's fuel for thought: gas is the most important resource
America needs. Watch Doomsday Preppers:
Without trucks and
gas, America stops to understand how without gas availability in
America, an economic collapse is feasible.

* Because gasoline, propane, natural gas, and charcoal produce
carbon monoxide, use of these fuels must be outside in a well-
ventilated space, and never indoors or you will risk carbon
monoxide poisoning.

Happy endings...
The time to get fuel for warmth is not the time when you're cold.
Plan when the weather is good. Chop your firewood. Order that
generator. Set up the solar system. Fuel up with propane for the
grill. Invest in and install a
wood burning cookstove. and

Generators are hungry for fuel: so you'll need to store reserves
and plenty of it.

Related articles

You also may be happy to read these prepping articles....

*Note: the U.S. Department of Transportation restricts shipment of pressurized fuel

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